Iola M. Grauer (Plotz)
Iola M. Grauer (Plotz), 85, of Oxford, died Friday, Nov. 8, 2019, from complications of dementia.
Funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 13, at the Oxford United Methodist Church with burial at the Czech National Cemetery in Cedar Rapids. Visitation will be from 4 to 7 p.m. Tuesday at the United Methodist Church in Oxford.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made in her memory to the Oxford Fire and First Responders.
For a complete obituary, to share a thought, memory or condolence, please visit the funeral home website at www.gayandciha.com. Gay & Ciha Funeral and Cremation Service is caring for Iola's family and her services.
Iola Mae Hudachek was born Jan. 3, 1934, the daughter of Arthur Hudachek and Carolyn Becicka Hudachek Johnson (Maynard). Iola graduated from West Liberty High School, and later married Kenneth Grauer Oct. 21, 1956, in West Liberty. Ken and Iola farmed in the North Liberty area, where they raised two children, Dennis and Sue. Iola always had a large garden where she canned the harvest every year. She also had her two milk cows, Bessie and Bonnie, plus her chickens. Iola decided to go to work, after Sue started school in 1966, as a school cook at the original Clear Creek elementary school in Tiffin. She also worked at the Oxford elementary and the Clear Creek high school in Tiffin, retiring in 1998 after 32 years. There always was laughter in the school kitchens, where she made many teacher and administrator friends and students.
Iola loved to laugh and tell stories. She was a proud member of the Ladies Birthday Club as she enjoyed hosting meetings and attending all their activities through the years. She also was on the voting board for Johnson County and served with Joanne Kahler and Adelaide Cochran for many years. Ken and Iola enjoyed summer trips to their lake house on Big Thunder Lake near Remer, Minn. She loved to fish for pan fish with her old cane pole and told people she didn't need a new pole. They met many new friends and she shared laughs and recipes and brought wild rice recipes back to Iowa. After she retired, they spent a few winters in Phoenix, Ariz. Most of all, Iola loved to dance and listen to the Sunday Morning Czech Party with Leo Greco, where we learned the Prune Song, Beer Barrel polka and the Anniversary waltz. Ken and Iola spent many Friday and Saturday nights at the Swisher Ballroom, Walford and many others dancing with their many friends. She would dance around the kitchen and tried to teach her children the waltz, fox trot and, of course, the polka. As she became unable get out and dance in her later years, it did not stop her from tapping her feet when the music started! Iola also brought to the area a country music show from Missouri to raise funds for Clear Creek High School Music Department for a few years. She helped convince and schedule a polka band from northern Minnesota (Chmielewski Brothers) to the Swisher Ballroom to make the 10-hour trip.
Iola's passion, learned from her mother, was her baking. There wasn't a Czech pastry she had not tried. Her kolaches, cinnamon rolls, zelnicky and poppy seed babovka were well known. Thankfully her traditon was passed on to her daughter-in-law, Barb and daughter, Sue. There was not a cookbook that Iola did not have and use. Dinners won't be the same without Iola's goulash, cottage cheese horseradish salad and, of course, kolaches.
After Ken passed away in 2000, Iola later married Eugene Plotz. After he passed in 2016, she moved to the Solon Care Center.
Iola's family consists of son, Dennis, and wife, Barb (Stahl) Grauer, their three children, Anna Boals (Chris), and their two sons, Caleb and Hudson, and Aaren Grauer and Tyler Grauer, all in the Oxford area; daughter, Sue Grauer, and her daughter, Cara in Denver, Colo.; half-sisters, Marie Livings, Linda Riggan and Elaine Kerf; and sister-in-laws, Hazel Schropp, Marianne Tresnak, Audrey Kosina, Eileen and Larry Jiras, and Delores Grauer.
Iola will be greatly missed along with her Czech heritage and a few choice phrases she passed on to us. Sbohem and Milujeme te' (Farewell and we love you) Matka (mother) and Babicka (grandmother).